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First Things First (4 of 5)
Series: Storm Proof Life
A pilot radios the control tower. "This is Cessna Alpha Delta two-four-niner calling the tower. May Day! May Day!" Quickly, a voice responded. "This is the tower. Cessna Alpha Delta two-four-niner, what's your problem, over." "Pilot to tower: I am 300 miles south-southeast at an altitude of 600 feet. I have just run out of fuel. Please instruct, over." A long pause. "Tower to pilot, tower to pilot, repeat after me... "Our Father, which art in heaven..."
For many, prayer is a last resort. Jesus insisted that prayer should be our first impulse. It should come as no surprise that prayer is a key ingredient in his blueprint for a storm proof life. That's the theme with which Jesus ends the Sermon on the Mount. He told the story of two builders whose houses were hit by storms. One stood and one fell. So with life! We all face storms. There are no storm-free lives. But there are storm-proof lives--lives built on something solid enough to hold when the wind blows and the waters rise. Is yours?
The Beatitudes, those eight short statements that begin the Sermon on the Mount, provide the foundation. That's where the building starts. The shape, the size, and the stability of life rest on those eight vital qualities. If the Beatitudes are the foundation, then the Lord's Prayer provides the load-bearing walls of our storm-proof house. These walls support and protect everything inside. Before we start unloading the Lord's Prayer, listen to what might happen if we began to take these words seriously.
THE DAY GOD ANSWERED
(G=God-strong, but understanding voice from off stage; P=Pray-er-standing at center as if in personal prayer)
Pray-er: "Our Father which art in heaven ...
P: Don't interrupt me. I'm praying.
G: But you called me.
P: Called you? I didn't call you. I'm praying. "Our Father which art in heaven. .
G: There, ...
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